Stanford MBAs Snag Highest 2011 Salaries

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by John A. Byrne on

MBA graduates from Stanford reported the highest median starting salaries this year at $125,000 a year, up 4.2% from $120,000 in 2010. MBAs from Harvard and Wharton were not far behind, garnering median starting salaries of $120,000 each, a healthy 9.1% increase from $110,000 a year earlier. MIT’s Sloanies were just a smidgeon below Harvard and Wharton at $119,000, up from $110,00 in 2010.

By and large, the news on the MBA pay front for the Class of 2011 is very good. Of 30 highly ranked business schools, 25 reported that starting pay for MBAs went up, often for the first time since the Great Recession kicked in during 2008. The six remaining schools–Virginia’s Darden, Yale, New York University’s Stern, Rice’s Jones School of Business, and UCLA’s Anderson School–reported no change from last year.

The upshot: Not a single school’s graduates sufferred a fall in median starting salaries. That’s quite a reversal from last year when ten of the top 30 schools reported declines in median starting salaries for their MBAs. The figures (see table below) do not include starting bonuses, guaranteed year-end bonuses, tuition reimbursement or other compensation many MBAs from the leading schools receive from their employers.

Some 19 of the 30 schools are now in six figures, up from 14 only last year. Ten schools reported median starting pay higher than $100,000, while nine of the 30 schools reported that the median starting salaries for their MBAs was exactly $100,000.

The average median starting salary for the Class of 2011 rose 4% to $101,010, up from $97,164 a year ago, according to data collected from 29 schools by Bloomberg Businessweek. The school’s reporting the largest percentage increases are Harvard and Wharton. What hasn’t returned are signing bonuses, reported BusinessWeek. Only eight schools reported increases in this area, while the vast majority said bonuses were flat and six schools reported declines.

School 2011 Median Salary 2010 2009
1. Stanford GSB $125,000 $120,000 $120,000
2. Harvard Business School $120,000 $110,000 $114,000
3. Pennsylvania (Wharton) $120,000 $110,000 $110,000
4. MIT (Sloan) $119,000 $110,000 $110,000
5. Berkeley (Haas) $111,000 $110,000 $110,000
6. Dartmouth (Tuck) $110,000 $105,000 $105,000
7, Columbia Business School $110,000 $100,000 $100,000
8. Northwestern (Kellogg) $110,000 $105,000 $105,000
9. Chicago (Booth) $107,000 $102,000 $100,000
10. Michigan (Ross) $103,000 $100,000 $100,000
11. Duke (Fuqua) $101,400 $100,000 $100,000
12. Virginia (Darden) $100,000 $100,000 $100,000
13. Emory (Goizueta) $100,000 $90,000 $91,000
14. Yale School of Management $100,000 $100,000 $96,000
15. New York (Stern) $100,000 $100,000 $95,000
16. Texas-Austin (McCombs) $100,000 $95,000 $95,000
17. UCLA (Anderson) $100,000 $100,000 $95,000
18. Carnegie Mellon (Tepper) $100,000 $95,000 $100,000
19. Cornell (Johnson) $100,000 $96,000 $95,000
20. UNC (Kenan-Flagler) $100,000 $95,000 $95,000
21. USC (Marshall) $96,000 $94,000 $95,000
22. Minnesota (Carlson) $95,507 $90,000 NA
23. Indiana (Kelley) $95,000 $89,144 $92,000
24. Rice (Jones) $95,000 $95,000 NA
25. Notre Dame (Mendoza) $93,500 $90,000 $92,500
26. Brigham Young (Marriott) $92,000 $88,550 $90,000
27. Vanderbilt (Owen) $91,000 $88,000 $95,000
28. Washington (Olin) $90,000 $85,000 $90,000
29. Georgia Institute of Technology $90,000 $85,000 $85,000
30. Michigan State (Broad) $87,500 $86,200 NA
31. Texas A&M $85,000 $85,000 NA

Source: Schools reporting to BusinessWeek & individual school employment reports

DON’T MISS: MBA JOBS BACK FOR CLASS OF 2013 or CLASS OF 2011: MORE JOB OFFERS, HIGHER PAY

Air Time - Comments
  • How does location play into this? It would be good to see where the grads end up and their location is taking into consideration. According to salary.com, living in Silicon Valley is 55% higher than living in Austin which I’m assuming most Stanford MBAs stay in the bay area. $100K in Austin would require $157K in Silicon Valley to maintain similar standard of living. When you take cost of living into consideration, I bet some of the other MBA programs would beat the top MBA grads as take home pay would be considerably higher.

  • Furious Styles

    Interesting, thank you for the response

  • Ed,

    MIT has since provided the data and I’ve updated the table to include MIT which looks very good on this list.

    Best,
    John

  • Ed

    Wheres MIT on this list?

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